Butternut Squash and Sausage Soup

DF, GF

Every football season I am given the gift of eight Sundays to myself, to do whatever it is that I want.  My boyfriend goes to the home games, leaving me to my own devices.  Sometimes that means going for a run in the city, other times it means doing karaoke in the privacy of my living room (there is a time and a place for every thing), and this Sunday it meant trying out a new recipe.  So with cooler temperatures in the air, soup seemed like the right choice.  The butternut squash gives it a creaminess that only the lactose intolerant can appreciate; while the sage brings in warmth, just as it does to the stuffing on a Thanksgiving day table.  Looking forward to next Sunday’s home game…

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Butternut Squash and Sausage Soup
1 butternut squash, peeled and diced
2 leeks, halved length wise then halved length wise again then chopped
1 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
6 sage leaves, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 lb italian sweet sausage (ground)
6 cups chicken stock, separated
1 c white wine
1 c frozen peas, thawed
olive oil
salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Toss butternut squash with olive oil, salt and pepper and roast for 20-25 minutes turning once.  Put all of the squash into a food processor or blender with 1 c chicken stock, puree.  In a large soup pot heat olive oil over medium high heat and pour in leeks, onion, garlic, sage, and bay leaf.  Let saute till the veggies start to soften, 3-5 minutes.  Add sausage and cook until browned, 8 minutes.  Then add wine while scrapping up brown bits from the bottom of the pan, let reduce.  Add chicken stock and pureed butternut squash and turn heat to high to bring soup to a boil.

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Once up to a boil reduce heat to low and let simmer for 30 minutes, stir occasionally.  Add peas and let cook for 5 minutes until warmed through, remove bay leaf, then serve.

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